Champ of the Week: Nunu wrapup


I know it’s only Friday, but I took some friends up on a last minute camping trip so I’ll be gone until Monday. I didn’t want to leave you high and dry on the Champ of the Week, though, and I certainly played enough games with Nunu this week to throw together a conclusive wrapup.

My conclusions are essentially the same as they were a few days ago. Nunu is an absolute blast if you can stomach not being the guy with your name in lights. Not all the time, anyway. While most characters with Nunu’s brand of team buffing and enemy debuffing don’t have what it takes to blow up a target, Nunu’s ult offers him the chance to be the star here and there and that makes him feel even better.

There is one important facet of Nunu’s gameplay that I haven’t talked about and that I rarely cover on the blog: peeling. Peeling is getting in the way of enemies who are trying to get to your team’s carry, just as you are trying to get at the enemy carry. Teams need to be able to do this or else the carry gets burned down and suddenly you’ve come up short on damage. Since Ice Blast has a 60 percent slow at max rank, Nunu is great at peeling. He also has the added benefit of a movement speed buff to throw on the carry, hopefully offering enough of a gap for escape. Nunu can also plant himself between the enemy team and the carry, waiting to use his ult until the enemy overcommits.

In short, Nunu has all of the tools you could want from an allied jungler, so long as your team has enough damage in the lanes. Between your team buffs, your debuffs for your opponents, some very solid damage output and the extra dragon/Baron control offered by consume, Nunu can be the cornerstone of any competitive team.


Champ of the Week: Undefeated with Nunu so far


After watching players from several top teams perform very well with Nunu, I knew he had the ability to make some game-changing plays. I wondered, though, if that power would translate to lower ELOs, where players tend to make their own mistakes instead of being forced into mistakes or out of their comfortable playstyle by another skilled opponent. From what I’ve seen so far, Nunu is just as powerful at my ELO as he is up top. I’m 3-0 since I started playing him this week, and two of those games have been absolute blowouts.

I used to see fairly limited success with Nunu, but I think that’s mostly due to the fact that I wasn’t speccing him or using runes for tanking. I know, I know, it seems like that should be obvious, but hitting someone for a huge chunk of his health with that snowball is just so much fun. The tank build keeps Nunu from being a priority target because he can absorb so much damage. That means you can spend more time alive in the fight, slowing critical targets, buffing your carries, and saving that ultimate for just the right moment.

Speaking of that ultimate, my god can it be fun. I used to think it was only possible to get a full channel if you had baited the enemy team into unexposed brush, but I had a game today in which I hit a full ult on a Shen, Pantheon, and Nocturne. That probably won’t happen often, but few things have felt better in this game than watching my channel bar fill up, the instant pop for a double kill at the end, followed by an Ice Blast for a triple kill. This was all immediately followed by a 4-0 surrender vote, which is just about as clear as it gets when I’m looking for an affirmation of my contribution.

Despite that situation, kills aren’t really Nunu’s strong point. While he can definitely run down a half-health jungler in the woods, his skills are really best suited to forcing the enemy team to fight. Unless everyone has a Flash ready, the combination of Ice Blast, his speed buff on an ally with some sort of crowd control, and his ultimate make for tough getaways. With all that control, he also has the benefit of a very hefty ultimate, a spell that can do loads of damage if left unchecked.

I think that’s what makes Nunu so much fun, and why I have such an easy time succeeding with him. Whatever it says about my personality, I love being the team’s hero. I like getting the kills, getting fed to the point that I can hard carry, melting the towers, and just generally seeing my name in lights. There’s just one problem with that mentality – the best spot for a skilled player on any team is usually in the tank/support department. Every team needs someone who can help set up the kills, cover a lane in a pinch, and worry about the big picture during teamfights while everyone else focuses on target priority. For me, Nunu brings all of those skills, with the added bonus that his ult hits like a bomb at every stage of the game. With just a little CC on your own team, Absolute Zero is remarkably easy to land, occasionally resulting in that double or triple kill that always keeps me coming back for more.


Champ of the Week: Nunu

Nunu bot splash.

Nunu currently holds one of the strangest positions in League of Legends. Very few players know how to play him well but the ones that do use him to devastating results. One of the top teams in the world, Team SoloMid, has a player named TheOddOne who is known for his Nunu play. I’ve always enjoyed Nunu, mostly for his simplicity. Also, when I have the chance to charge up that ult in some brush before anyone arrives, I just about jump out of my seat with glee.

So this week I’ll be playing Nunu. My main goals are to learn to effectively counter jungle against a variety of opponents, to focus on a solid farm and assisting my carries with their kills, and to try to assess just how viable his ult really is. Check back later in the week for my impressions of the tankiest Yeti in town.


Nunu gets legendary “Nunu Bot” skin

For a brief moment I thought legendary skins might be on their way out. Several of the 975RP skins are close to or better than the legendary skins for a given champion (ahem, Corki), so it seems a little silly to keep marketing skins as “legendary.”

Riot has seen fit to keep moving with the legendary skin releases, this time in the form of Nunu Bot. Riot released a preview video of the new skin to its YouTube channel today. The skin looks awesome, but probably not $15 awesome, at least not for me. There have been a few champions in the past that I’ve played often enough that the legendary skins didn’t look half bad, especially when I already had some RP laying around. Now I split my time between so many different characters that it doesn’t really make sense to spend so much on one skin. For any serious Nunu player, though, I’d call it a must-have.


LoL: Patch impressions part 1

Desert Trooper Garen.It’s been a crazy week. My sister and brother-in-law were in town for the early week and I had a crazy workday today. Luckily I have the night in, so I’m going to be doing some serious testing with all the changes with the new patch. So far I’ve made some decent progress so I’ll start with those and make another post either late this evening or tomorrow.

First, Katarina. I have to say, I’m impressed by how much improved she feels. She is by no means dominant, but she’s plenty strong if you play smart and safe with a good lanemate. Her early game harass has been slightly improved with the change to KI and the added durability from KI -> Shunpo is really nice. Personally, I think damage is the way to go now. AP just doesn’t scale as well any more and the farm required to get damage to that scary level feels much lower than the AP threshold.

Next up is Nunu. I’ve never been a big Nunu fan, but he feels much stronger than he did. The Blood Boil change is enough to make him an excellent addition to most teams. I was also noticing the Visions change much more than I thought I would. Maybe it was just the team I was against, but I felt better about my contribution to the team than ever before with the Yeti Rider.

Of course I have to talk about Garen. After a few matches I remain on the fence. Building him as a tank can be fun; his W skill makes him next to unkillable in most situations. Unfortunately, tank Garen doesn’t do much damage, and other than the long cooldown on W he doesn’t really have any other tanking skills. I’d still much rather have Shen in the mix. He does deal excellent early game damage, but if you can’t get ahead he can be very frustrating. You pop Judgement waiting for big numbers that never come. There’s also a bit of a bug with his Decisive Strike wherein critical strikes don’t appear to apply the bonus damage from the skill and don’t benefit from critical damage bonuses. In one game I was critting for 500+ with normal strikes and just over 300 with Justice rank 5, which I believe is 120 bonus damage. Something is a little off there. His ult is fine, but it’s really a kill-stealer/finisher, a type of skill that has never impressed me. Mordekaiser’s ult is very similar and provides the added benefit of a pet to go tank towers or last hit creeps and champions.

That’s it for now folks. Feel free to add me at ‘The Wiggin Boy’ for some in-game madness.


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